Posts by: astern

Longest green flight in the world

Emirates Airline flight # 225 landed at San Francisco International yesterday afternoon having completed a remarkable nonstop trip from Dubai. The journey aboard a Boeing 777 200-LR (for long-range) covered 8,085 miles and was billed as the longest green flight in the world. Emirates spent three months planning this flight to maximize fuel savings and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Before… read more →

Browner is Greener

President-elect Obama will soon appoint Carol Browner to a newly created post of energy and environment policy coordinator in the White House. Browner, who served as head of EPA during the Clinton Administration, is a savvy, results-oriented leader with experience getting things done in Washington. Browner will have to draw upon all of her skills if she is to advance… read more →

Judah Maccabee had a TerraPass

Jerusalem, Dec. 14 -- Just days before the arrival of Hanukkah 5769, archeologists have surprised Jews around the world with the discovery that Judah Maccabee -- the protagonist in the famous Jewish survival story -- had a Home TerraPass affixed to his tent. The evidence emerged from a previously untouched area of Israeli land where the Maccabees fought their last… read more →

California leads the way (again)

California regulators took a major step forward in climate policy today by approving a plan to implement the state’s landmark Global Warming Solutions Act. The plan commits the state to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from 596 million metric tons (business-as-usual) to 427 million metric tons in 2020, or 30% from what would otherwise occur. This is a big deal! California’s… read more →

Airport taxi lines

I landed at Washington Dulles airport last month en route to a climate policy conference. As I waited at the taxi stand for a cab to take me into the city, a giant Ford Expedition SUV with seats for eight passengers pulled up. I asked the dispatcher, "Do I have to get in this thing? Can't I go in a… read more →

Power play drives climate policy

Parliamentary maneuvers in Congress can seem like inside baseball to those who don't follow it every day, but this stuff really matters. Take the recent example of Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) ousting Rep. John Dingell (D-MI) as chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. For years, Dingell has been a roadblock to meaningful climate legislation in the House. Representing… read more →

Obama stays the course on climate

In the two weeks since the election, Barack Obama has stayed mostly in Chicago -- and except for announcing White House staff appointments -- has made few public statements. But the president-elect emerged today to deliver a video address to a gathering of governors and policy experts in Los Angeles. Obama affirmed his commitment to federal cap and trade legislation.… read more →

Starry, Starry Night (Not)

*National Geographic* (Nov. 2008 issue) has a compelling cover story on "The End of Night," which explains how excessive artificial lighting is damaging our planet. The article describes the enormous harm to wildlife caused by lights that disturb normal nocturnal cycles. In tragic terms, we learn about migrating birds crashing into lit-up skyscrapers, sea turtles struggling to find dark beaches… read more →

Boosts for bike commuting

Buried in the financial rescue bill passed by Congress last week is a provision to encourage bike commuting. The idea is to level the playing field for cyclists, who currently can't get benefits like those available for participants in car or van pools or other programs designed to reduce traffic congestion. Starting in January, employers can reimburse bike commuters up… read more →

Schwarzenegger to host climate summit

Can the Governor of California terminate global warming? The Hollywood action figure took a step in that direction by announcing yesterday that he would host a climate policy summit in November for governors of all 50 states and the leaders of states and provinces from other countries, including China and India. During a speech in San Francisco, Gov. Schwarzenegger said… read more →
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